Yesterday I began reviewing some of what’s been wrong in the Charismatic movement over time. Although present discussions going on all around are sparked by the Todd Bentley / Lakeland revelations of the recent weeks, this is not my prime concern here except insofar as the issues there fall into a pattern which should have been avoidable based on past experience. In essence, I am suggesting that there are certain weaknesses in the charismatic movement which make it susceptible to the kinds of abuse and excess which have caused the downfall of leaders and confusion or injury to some of the followers in the movement.
As I was wrapping up my post yesterday, I offered the observation that the types of issues could be summarized as falling within three primary concerns:
(1) A lack of humility, coupled with a focus on the man and the miracle.
(2) A lack of balanced grounding in Scripture using standard hermeneutic methods.
(3) A weak understanding of the work of Christ and the purpose of the church.
Even these three interrelate, but having leveled these three major charges, I need to provide some further explanation.
Humility, Man, & Miracle
In part due to a recognition and even emphasis on “the anointing,” individual leaders can be elevated in the eyes of followers who seek to gain an impartation from them. Evidence of the miraculous in their ministry is taken to be evidence of the anointing, and although it may be stated that God uses fallen people and miracles are not an endorsement of the individual, in practice, the miraculous is taken as a sign of spiritual power garnered through “closeness” to God. In this context, it is assumed that the leader hears from God more directly and his words therefore tend to carry more weight with their followers, even if they press past the bounds of orthodoxy.
The leader himself is aware of having been placed on a pedestal, and it is an innate part of the human condition that this knowledge will eventually lead to the belief that he belongs on the pedestal. From the pulpit, the leader may say that he has no special power or ability, just that he prays or fasts or seeks God in a particular fashion. Such statements in practice imply that while the ability is not innate to the leader, he has “earned” it from God through his actions — as might any of his followers. The leader is rather likely to hold this view himself, which reinforces his sense of entitlement.
The pride of the leader in this scenario makes him unapproachable and unteachable, not willing to consider correction when required. Meanwhile, the longer this goes on, the more his followers have the pedestal-view of him reinforced. The brewing scene is clearly a dangerous one, where the leader becomes the focus for him and for his followers, who seek to emulate him. In their emulation, they also begin to focus on themselves and the ways in which they too can gain spiritual power for whatever ends they might deem appropriate.
Gnostic Handling of Scripture
Even in my charismatic days, it used to make my skin crawl when I heard a message explaining some type or shadow from the Old Testament. Being Bible-College educated I knew better, despite the fact that leaders quite a number of years my seniors were “expounding” scripture this way. I’ve posted on this in particular before, and some discussion has ensued — the fact that the New Testament authors and some of the church fathers interpreted scripture this way has caused some to feel that we also should read the Old Testament through these glasses. There is much to be said about this, but fundamentally, the text cannot mean now what it never meant then. In other words, Moses didn’t write things that nobody understood for 8,000 years until we came along: rather, he wrote to his original audience, who understood the meaning of his words.
Perhaps even more common are messages explaining the “hidden keys” or “steps to…” or similar verbiage. It is presupposed in these messages that scripture has hidden secrets which are not readily apparent to most readers but which in some form or another yield particular results such as success, health, harmony, and prosperity. Again, it seems difficult to fathom why God would “hide” some of these most “important” ideas, nor to imagine how if he did hide them, they remained so for millennia.
I added a word to the title of this section which wasn’t in my original description: gnostic. Both of these methods of handling scripture seem to require some sort of esoteric knowledge which is not readily available to all, meaning that not just anyone can read and interpret the Bible. Such a concept is gnostic in origin and effectively places a gap between the biblical interpreter and the common man, as outlined in the above section. Worse, it creates a view of our relationship to spiritual forces that has more in common with magic than with Christian spirituality. In magic, it is clearly presumed that particular rules exist for dealing with spiritual beings, and if those rules are followed the right outcome will be produced and the spiritual realm will be available to do our bidding.
In the comments on yesterday’s post, I said
The OT speaks of a messiah to come, and some of the characteristics of this messiah are given. Understanding what the Jewish people were waiting for based on their understanding of the OT at the time helps us see how Jesus fulfills the criteria — and in some cases, how the Jewish nation missed it. This way, when Jesus quotes a particular bit of OT scripture or the events of the gospels allude to something in the OT, we can understand that as a messianic claim. Remove that understanding, and the messianic proof is down to what Jesus said and the miracles [he did]. Take those two proofs into the modern day — “hypothetically,” let’s say someone calls himself an apostle and a healing miracle occurs when he prays. If those two proofs alone were adequate for Jesus and him, it would add implied credence to whatever our hypothetical apostle teaches… no matter how outlandish or heretical.
Setting scripture as the plumb line for doctrine, it is absolutely imperative that it be handled rightly and that it be allowed to function as the yardstick for all that is taught. If any teaching cannot stand the scrutiny of accepted hermeneutical principles, it must be set aside as not having the weight of scripture behind it.
Christ & the Church
One of the most rampant maladies within the charismatic movement is legalism. While they may often speak vehemently against it, often the alternative position is simply another form of legalism. The understanding of scripture as offering keys and steps to particular outcomes encourages the misunderstanding that the Christian life consists largely of rules and patterns to be followed in order to achieve one’s desired ends. This particular point relates strongly to the preceding section on the handling of scripture, where the Old Testament is particularly mishandled. In the New Testament, the epistles may be sought first for understanding on how to live and what ought to be done rather than first considering the gospels and what Jesus said and did. Tragically, somewhere in this milieu is bred a failure to appreciate how utterly Christ has broken the requirements of the Law and of the legalism that is reflected in it. Charismatics may well understand that they aren’t prohibited from eating a pork chop, but they often substitute other behaviours which are seen as necessary to maintaining the favour of God.
As might be expected from what I have said so far, the form of faith being described is very focused on the individual self. The teaching described focuses on what the individual must do in order to obtain a given outcome. When the gospel message is considered in this context, the almost inescapable conclusion is that Christ’s death was to serve individual prosperity, and the church is a place where his followers encourage one another in the pursuit of their aims and goals. An obviously self-centered view of the gospel arises and yields a corrupted notion of the purpose of the church. Fundamentally, the church exists for the good of the world, not the happiness and comfort of its members. The charismatic church may understand the need for evangelism based on the Great Commission, but in practice the charismatic church is largely non-missional, seeking its own needs first.
I would hope for outpourings of the Holy Spirit in significant forms of revival, and one naturally thinks of the charismatic movement as a likely place for this to occur. If, however, they are to properly handle such an event, they must have a solid understanding of the purpose of the church, which must somehow relate to any such revival. Of course, the necessary corrective action to all of the aforementioned areas will greatly enhance any handling of such an event, and they interrelate such that improvements in one area may be joined to better understanding in another.
Are the Charismatics Unique?
Are these three criticisms applicable to the evangelical or fundamentalist church as a whole? To one degree or another, I think this is probably the case. While not generally given to the same hermeneutical errors, others may be found — dispensationalism, for example. Biblical interpreters following sound principles of exegesis may still be arrogant, and the charismatic church hardly has a corner on self-centered expressions of church. While the critiques I level here are directed at the charismatic church, I would hope that in these we might all see — regardless of our own ecclesiological stripe — a reflection of the hazards to which we ourselves are susceptible. To deny this is merely to fall prey to pride and a poor judgment of oneself. Even as the gaze of the Christian community is squarely set on a significant charismatic misfire, we will do well to consider our own vulnerabilities to similar outcomes.
In Lee Grady’s editorial last week, he said something that others have noted as well:
A prominent Pentecostal evangelist called me this week after Bentley’s news hit the fan. He said to me: “I’m now convinced that a large segment of the charismatic church will follow the anti-Christ when he shows up because they have no discernment.” Ouch. Hopefully we’ll learn our lesson this time and apply the necessary caution when an imposter shows up.
It seems to me that this Pentecostal evangelist is simply committing a different error. Grady points out yet another, namely that we’re just plain gullible. Of the comment I’ve quoted, John Piper wrote,
Charismatics will not be the only ones who follow the Antichrist when he rises. So will the mass of those who today in thousands of evangelical churches belittle the truth of biblical doctrine as God’s agent to set us free (John 8:32).
Discernment is not created in God’s people by brokenness, humility, reverence, and repentance. It is created by biblical truth and the application of truth by the power of the Holy Spirit to our hearts and minds. When that happens, then the brokenness, humility, reverence, and repentance will have the strong fiber of the full counsel of God in them. They will be profoundly Christian and not merely religious and emotional and psychological.
The common denominator of those who follow the Antichrist will not be “charismatic.” It will be, as Paul says, “they refused to love the truth.”
Dan Edelen wrote the other day,
Lakeland was new in one startling regard: It brought many of the different streams of charismatic practice together.
Looking over the most recent “revivals,” each had a flavor unique to their particular stream. Toronto was largely a Third Wave charismatic happening. Pensacola was Pentecostal.
But Lakeland was different; it attracted everyone….
The days ahead will be marked by increasingly bold attempts to unite all the streams of the charismatic movement. I believe that will not be a good thing because instead of bringing a cleansing to the movement, it will instead unite all the craziness. Lakeland already proved this to be the case. We have not seen the last of this, though.
It feels counterintuitive to suggest that any increase of unity within the body of Christ is a bad thing, but I do see what Dan is getting at… unless these converging streams bring or produce changes along the lines I (and others) have described, the outcome could very easily be an increase in momentum toward error. If anything, this highlights the stakes for us — and how imperative these corrective adjustments are for all of us. Dan concludes with the sage advice, “Be open to the Lord, but never stop being watchful, faithful, and wise.”
Tomorrow I’ll share something that I used to tell the leaders I worked with in order to help check themselves to stay focused and properly oriented.
I wouldn’t disagree with a lot of what you have written here, and i speak as one is who a leader in charismatic church in the UK! The three things you have mentioned here, are things that have bothered me enormously about our movement.
What i find interesting, in the UK at least, is that there isn’t the coming together in the way you describe among Charismatics. There are those here, who would have thrown their lot in with lakeland, and those who were distinctly uncomfortable (probably where i have been) and everything in between.
There is also a move here among some charismatic churches to become much missional in emphasis – to move away from the “bless me” consumer church, meeting and program orientated, hyped (and lots of other words you could use) type of church, to one that is empowering, engaging with our communities, seeking to be good news (and not just “do” evangelism). I know missional is a buzz word, but think there are many (charismatic) churches honestly reflecting on our history and lack of real engagement with people and issues outside the church, and seeking ways in which we can return to our roots of serving people beyond the wall of our buildings and congregations. We don’t have all the answers; nor are proclaiming success; we are seeking to keep the baby, but throw out the bathwater. I am sure we won’t be perfect in that, but I don’t see the need to deconstruct, but rather subvert from within!
And yet we also want to hold onto, in the midst of the craziness (that can seem that is the norm if you watch christian TV, or go the really big conferences) that God does still encounter people by his Spirit and Jesus does still heal people. I don’t personally see that as central as I used to, but neither do i want to ignore or deny it.
I am really quite hopeful, while looking at the church scene (and Charismatic scene in particular) in the UK that it isn’t business as usual in all quarters…
I really agree the UK seems to me more post-Christian than the US … to be honest i really don’t know much of the Canadian scene, and only of the US scene is through blogs, podcasts and books. It seems in the UK that some are frightened to death about the state of the church and culture and are redoubling their efforts to do more of what they have always done, but better.
Others, are frightened to death about the state of the church and culture and realise there is no hope in continuing what we have always done, and expecting to see anything but what we have already seen. So we are marching off the map…
I have never been more unsure of what the future holds and whether we can make it! But i also have never been more excited about the small green shoots that seem to be emerging.
Thanks for the links – i love his definition of post-charismatic. i do wish we could find some different language, other than post-xxx. I know that post-charismatic doesn’t mean an abandonment of all things of the Holy Spirit, but when you use the term (or post-evangelical … which is perhaps even more misunderstood) people look at you as though you are abandoning the faith. I have started using the term progressive evangelical. Could i be a progressive charismatic as well?
Thanks Brother, some excellent thoughts here, certainly clearer than my muddled Facebook attempts! I’ve read Rob’s book (in fact its how I first found your blog!) and am trying to figure out how to be post-charismania without being post-Holy Spirit (as Rob puts it) here in the UK… Keep at it mate!
i don’t have a dog in this fight, not being charismatic in any sense of the word, but i would say that this seems to be another poignant reminder of the death of christendom. we have for a long time merely been talking to ourselves while we whistled past the graveyard, never realizing the open grave beyond the fence was for us, for our world-view. there are many reasons for this, of course, most are sociological and therefore have nothing to do with our faithfulness, but we only add to the cultural delight of our demise by our own naiveté and our foolish thinking that somehow we are exempt from the rules.
Holy Laughter, holy bark, holy drunkard and etc. are not found in the book of Acts during the Pentecost. Some Charismatic churches might use the word, leap, laugh, drunkard and etc. from the Old and New Testaments to support these movements. However, bear in mind that the word, leap, laugh, drunkard and etc. are mentioned instead of the full phrase of holy laughter, holy bark and etc. What if these practices are not from the work of the Holy Spirit, the insisting that these practices are from the work of Holy Spirit has caused one to abuse the name of the Holy Spirit and it would have grieved the Holy Spirit to accept the wrong saying that these are the work of them. However, the Holy Spirit does not do it. One has indeed blaspheme against the Holy Spirit by abusing the name of the Holy Spirit despite he does not do it. The blasphemy against the Holy Spirit cannot be forgivable according to the New Testament.
1) The following are the proves that angels could perform miracles healing and there are falling angels in the Scripture to be against God too:
John 5:3-4, “In these lay a great multitude of impotent folk, of blind, halt, withered, waiting for the moving of the water. For an angel went down at a certain season into the pool, and troubled the water: whosoever then first after the troubling of the water stepped in was made whole of whatsoever disease he had.”
2) The following are the proves that Angels could perform marvellous wonders:
Luke 1:7, “And they had no child, because that Elizabeth was barren and they both were now well stricken in years.” Luke 1:13, “but the angel said unto him, Fear not, Zacharias: for their prayer is heard; and they wife Elisabeth shall bear thee a son, and thou shalt call his name John”. Luke 1:18, “And Zacharias said unto the angel, ‘Whereby shall I know this? for I am an old man, and my life well stricken in years.” Luke 1:19, “And THE ANGEL ANSWERING UNTO HIM, I AM GRABRIEL…” Luke 1:20, “AND BEHOLD, THOU SHALL BE DUMB, AND NOT ABLE TO SPEAK, UNTIL THE DAY THAT THESE THINGS SHALL BE PERFORMED, because thou believest not my words, which shall be fulfilled in their season.” Luke 1:22, “And when he came out, HE COULD NOT SPEAK UNTO THEM”.
Matthews 28:1-2, “Now after the Sabbath, as the first day of the week began to dawn, Many Magdalene and the other Mary came to see the tomb. And, behold, THERE WAS A GREAT EARTHQUAKE, FOR AN ANGEL OF THE LORD DESCENDED FROM HEAVEN, AND ROLLED BACK THE STONE OF THE DOOR, and sat it.”
Acts 12:23, “Then immediately an angel of the Lord struck him, because he did not give glory to God. And he was eaten by worms and died.”
3) Angels could appear in somebody’s dream:
Matthews 2:19, “…an angel of the Lord appeared in a dream to Joseph…”; Matthew 1:20, “…an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream…”
As angels could perform wonders, are there any strongest proves to show that those wonders in contemporary Charismatic Churches are from God? If someone in contemporary Charismatic Church could prove it, we have to accept it. However, if nobody could prove whether the existence of wonder in contemporary Charismatic Churches is from God or the Holy Spirit or Angels, there is a danger that one would comment that certain wonders are from God or from the Holy Spirit or from Jesus Christ and, in case if they are not and it would turn up that we have forced God or Jesus Christ or the Holy Spirit to bear the name of doer and indirectly we have abused the name of Jesus Christ or God or the Holy Spirit and this causes us to speak against Jesus Christ or God or the Holy Spirit indirectly.
Could contemporary Charismatic Church claim that the miracles and wonder they perform in the name of Jesus Christ, is accompanied by correct teaching (in accordance with God’s Word) and righteous living?
A good Christian performs a wonder through the name of Jesus Christ in the Church. Many audiences would claim that this be the work of God/Jesus Christ/the Holy Spirit. As fallen angels could perform wonders, i.e. Buddhists could perform wonders as it is listed in the Internet too. What if the wonders in contemporary Charismatic churches are not from God/Jesus Christ/the Holy Spirit, the surrounding audience that claims to be the work of the Holy Spirit/God/Jesus Christ, would have indirectly abused the name of each of them even though they might not be the one to do it and it indirectly causes the defamation of the name of God/Jesus Christ/the Holy Spirit and they might have grieved as a result of the whole church speaking against them since they might not do it. The abusing of the name of Jesus Christ/the Holy Spirit/God would cause the audience to commit continual sins as when and they address these be the work of God.
Can a Christian or a Catholics claim that he has followed the correct teaching and righteous living when day by day and month by month and year by year seeing people keep on claiming the wonders in contemporary Charismatic Churches to be the work of God/Jesus Christ/the Holy Spirit without telling them the danger that they would have sinned against God/Jesus Christ/the Holy Spirit what if the so-called, wonders, might not be their work then?
For holy bark, you could see people running around the churches crazily to bark here and there.
For Holy laughter, you could see people laugh without stopping.
For manifestation of the Spirit, you see people roll from one place to another without knowing what he/she has done after performing.
All these are not mentioned in the book of Acts.
A number of people in the church mention that they receive revelation from God through words of knowledge, prophecy, tongues speaking, words of wisdom. Many prophets arose previously claimed that year 2000 and 1987 were the end of the world. However, the year before year 2000 and 1987, none of these people that claim to receive so-called, special gifts of the Holy Spirit, say that these years 2000 and 1987 are not the end of the world. If it is the work of the Holy Spirit, the Holy Spirit should have informed all these people to correct their mistakes.
LUKE 9:49-50 ABOUT THOSE THAT DO NOT FOLLOW JESUS BUT COULD PERFORM WONDERS IN JESUS’ NAME
Luke 9:49, 50 (TCNT), “Hereupon John said: “Sir, we saw a man driving out demons by using your name, and we tried to prevent him, because he does not follow you with us.” “None of you must prevent him,” Jesus said to John; “he who is not against you is for you.”
Were these people that were mentioned in Luke 9:49-50 to be the disciples of Jesus since it is mentioned that they did not follow Jesus?
The following are the verses to prove that God’s people would surely follow Jesus:
John 10:27, “My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me.”
John 10:3, “To him the porter openeth, and the sheep hear his voice; and he calleth his own sheep by nam, and leadeth them out”.
From the above verses, it is obvious that the sheep will surely follow the shepherd, Jesus.
As the phrase, he is not against you is for you, is mentioned in Luke 9:49 instead of the phrase, he is not against you is for me Jesus, it does not show that all these people that could use Jesus to perform miracles were for Jesus but for us, disciples, especially Jesus had mentioned clearly in John 10:27 and 10:3 that Christians would surely follow Jesus. The possible interpetation for Luk 9:49 for him to mention that they were for us that it might be that they could assist us in bringing outsiders to the attention of Jesus Christ for our evangelism. However, they are not for Jesus since they do not follow Jesus since they would definitely follow Jesus if they are for Jesus.
Indeed the people as mentioned in Luke 9:49-50 that could perform wonders in Jesus’s name were not God’s people or else Jesus should have included these people ont top of the twelve disciples. Or in other words, if these people that could perform wonders in Jesus’ name were God’s people, there would be more that twelve disciples instead of remaining to be twelve all the time during Jesus’ mission and it proves the fact that Jesus’ name could be abused to perform miracles. Or in other words, despite these people as mentioned in Luke 9:49-50 were not following Jesus and were not the disciples of Jesus, they could use Jesus’ name to perform wonders.
CASTING OUT DEMONS MIGHT NOT NECESSARILY CAUSE ONE TO HAVE DISTURBED BY DEMONS AS MENTIONED IN ACTS 19:13-16:
Matthew 17:15-16, “Lord have mercy on my son: for he is lunatick, and sore vexed: for ofttimes he falleth into the fire, and oft into the water. And I brought him to thy disciples, and they could not cure him.” Matthew 17:18-19, “And Jesus rebuked the devil and he departed out of him: and the child was cured from that very hour. Then came the disciples to Jesus apart, and said, ‘Why could not we cast him out?’ ” Matthew 17:21, “Howbeit this kind goeth not out but by prayer and fasting.” From these verses, it is obvious that the failure in casting out demons might not necessarily cause one to be disturbed by demons as that is mentioned in Luke 9:49-50.
PROOF THAT ANGELS COULD PERFORM MIRACULOUS HEALING AND THERE ARE FALLEN ANGELS TOO:
John 5:3-4, “In these lay a great multitude of impotent folk, of blind, halt, withered, waiting for the moving of the water. For an angel went down at a certain season into the pool, and troubled the water: whosoever then first after the troubling of the water stepped in was made whole of whatsoever disease he had.””
From John 5:3-4, it shows that angels could heal various kinds of illnesses whether they are blinded, halt and withered. As angels could perform miraculous healings and there are so-called, fallen angels, it is irrational to jump into conclusion that certain illnesses be healed to be the work of God/Jesus Christ/the Holy Spirit since some wonders might be the work of angels and/or fallen angels.
One might have quoted Luke 9:49-50 well that nobody should stop those people that perform miracles in Jesus’ name. However, he should meditate Matthew 7:22-23 carefully again that the so-called people to use Jesus’ name to perform wonders might be rejected by the Lord. For instance, if these people that are mentioned in Matthew 7:22-23 to use Jesus’ name to perform wonders are the work of God/Jesus Christ/the Holy Spirit, there should not be any strong ground for Jesus to reject them. However, Jesus will reject them despite they do perform wonders in Jesus’ name and there is a query the so-called wonders that they perform are from God. The following are the extracts:
Matthew 7:22-23, “Many will say to me in that day, ‘Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in your name, cast out demons in your name, and done many wonders in your name?’ And then I will declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from me, you who practise lawlessness!’
Charismatic people say that they believe in Jesus Christ. However, they depend mostly on their emotions; their sights of miracles; and whatever they could visualize from their sights. Whenever they feel and see the existence of some forms of power and they say that there is God. When they could not see any miracles or wonders or their emotions are down, they say that God is not with them. They claim that they receive the Holy Spirit due to they say that they feel something passing through their bodies. All in all they claim that they are saved and yet all these are done through feelings. According to the Scripture, faith is the substance of hope of what is unseen and/or what would occur in the future. Dependence upon emotions to give comment the existence of God contradicts the principality of faith in the Scripture. Their salvations are in doubt and they might not be saved since salvation is through faith and not feeling. What good does it bring about if the number of Charismatic churches has been expanding! Many are non-Christians and a few are true Christians. Now the underlying problem is we, the true Church, must be strengthened in Biblical knowledge and not to be affected by false teachings.
You go way too far in your condemnation of charismatics, in my opinion. For one, emotionless Christianity is pretty sterile… read your Bible and you’ll find a lot of emotion involved in people of faith. Sure, emotions are not always to be trusted, but you can do away with them completely.
To assault another believer’s salvation as you do is to grieve the Holy Spirit… it is not for us to say who is and is not “saved”. God will sort it out — leave it to him.
The vitriolic nature of your last comment here skirts what I consider acceptable in this forum… it’s simply an attack with no constructive substance, and does not advance a conversation between understanding-seekers in any way at all.
Contemporary Charismatic Churches support pre-millennium, mid-millennium, post-millennium and etc. However, the so-called, manifestation of the Holy Spirit in contemporary Charismatic Churches does not stop them to support these theories in the past and there is a query whether the so-called, manifestation of the Holy Spirit in contemporary Charismatic Churches is from God.
The following is the reason about my comment:
Rev 22:18-19, “For I testify unto every man that heareth the words of this prophecy of book, If any man shall add unto these things, God shall add unto him the plagues that are written in this book: And if any man shall take away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part out of the book of life, and out of the holy city, and from the things which are written in this book.”
As the phrase, shall add, is mentioned in Rev 22:18-19 with the phrase, God shall add unto him the plagues, it implies that God demands us, Christians, not to add any words into the book of Revelation. As the phrase, shall take away from…this prophecy, is mentioned in Rev 22:18-19 with the phrase, shall take away his part out of the book of life, it implies that God forbids Christians to remove anything from the book of Revelation.
The interpretation of the Revelation that Jesus would come in Rev chapter 6 before the tribulation; or Jesus would come in Rev 20 after tribulation; and/or etc., implies that one has added words into the book of Revelation and that should be forbidden as mentioned in Rev 22:18-19. What if Jesus would come at some part of Revelation instead of in Rev 6, those Christians that insist he would come in Rev 6 has added words into God’s mouth that Jesus would come in Rev 6 even though Rev 6 does not mention it. The worse is some would link up the Book of Daniel and/or any other books to the book of Revelation. What if the actual interpretation of God for the revelation is not like this, these Christians have acted contradictorily to Rev 22:18-19 to add words into God’s mouth that God’s prophecy should be so but indeed God does not mean it.
The same is for those that interpets Rev 13, the 666 to be the anti-christ. Nothing is mentioned in Rev 13 that 666 is for anti-christ and yet one links the word, anti-christ in 1 John 1 to be the one in Rev 13. What if God’s interpretation for 666 in Rev 13 not to be for anti-christ, we, Christians, simply force God to accept the so-called, 666, in Rev 13 to be anti-christ then.
To my personal opninion, we, Christians, must leave the book of Revelation not to be interpreted so as we would not violate Rev 22:18-19. The reason is we, Christians, would have added words to God’s mouth in case if the book of Revelation, to God’s interpretation is another way instead of following our own interpretation.
As supported by John 5:3-4 that even angel could perform miracles and there could be fallen angels, the so-called, the practising in feeling the presence of God, and the so-called, miraculous healing, among churches might be from fallen angels instead of God.
What if that is from fallen angels instead of from God, to do away this practice would not grieve the Holy Spirit since it is not from God.
What if that is from fallen angels instead of from God, the practice of the feeling of the presence of God, and the so-called, miraculous healing, would not show the prove of the existence of the Holy Spirit within their God.
If that is so, no doubt Matthew 7:21-23 mention that God would reject those people that could perform miracles in Jesus’ name since they might not be from God and of God.
You might use verses from Bible to support your practice in Charismatic movement. As angels could perform miracles, there isn’t any strong proof that what Charismatic movement now is from God or from the fallen angels.
What if that is from fallen angels, those people that are in Charismatic churches would be the same as sorcery that plays with other spirit that should be forbidden by God. Could they be saved? There is a question unless they truly repent from sinning.